Hockey commentator Jeremy Roenick alleges, in a lawsuit filed Friday, that he was fired from his position with NBC Sports for being straight and for being a vocal supporter of President Donald Trump.
The longtime NHL player was fired from his job as an NHL commentator for NBC News after he made lewd comments about a female coworker to a hockey podcast called “Spittin’ Chiclets” and jokingly suggested that he, his wife, and his coworker had slept together.
“I play it off like we’re going to bed together every night, the three of us,” Roenick says, referring to a vacation he and his wife took to Portugal with fellow NBC broadcaster, Kathryn Tappen. “If it really came to fruition, that would really be good, but it’s never going to happen.”
Roenick also said that his wife and Tappen looked “f***in’ smokin’” in bathing suits. “A** and boobs everywhere. It’s great.”
NBC suspended Roenick indefinitely before deciding to terminate his contract.
In a lawsuit, filed against NBC last week, however, Roenick alleges that his comments were used as cover and that NBC News really fired him for being a vocal supporter of President Donald Trump, according to Fox News. The lawsuit suggests that other NBC commentators have made similar, lewd jokes about coworkers and received a pass from network management.
“The lawsuit says that while Roenick was fired for his comments about Tappen, the network responded differently after NBC figure skating commentators Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir made a comedy promo for the network’s streaming service that referred to a vulgar term for the vagina and other sexual remarks along with footage of Olympic figure skater Bradie Tennell,” Fox reports.
He alleges that Lipinksi and Weir frequently made sexually tinged comments about figure skaters when they were covering high profile sporting events for the network but that Weir’s comments were brushed off because he is gay. Specifically, the lawsuit claims that when Roenick confronted NBC supervisor Sam Flood, that Flood excused Weir’s behavior because he is “gay and can say whatever.”
Roenick also says he was denied the opportunity to speak at the 2016 Republican National Convention in support of now-President Donald Trump because NBC frowned on Trump supporters.
“Roenick claims that when he asked Flood if he could speak at the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Flood said, ‘I’m not saying what you can do. You know who you work for. You work for NBC. That would not look good on your NBC record,'” per Fox.
“Mr. Roenick is the victim of double standards wrongfully asserted against him,” Roenick’s lawyer told media late last week. “A person’s career should not be thrown away by a company as Mr. Roenick’s career was with NBC. We are confident that the evidence that will be brought to light from this lawsuit will reveal the rampant disregard of Mr. Roenick’s rights.”
NBC has not yet commented on the lawsuit.